Spoilers for Veronica Mars Season 4 below. If you can spare a minute from your binge of Veronica Mars Season 4, which was spontaneously released on Friday, a week ahead of schedule, there's an important location to dissect. In the first episode of the Hulu revival, an explosion at a hotel rocks Neptune. It was such a centerpiece of the first episode, that it's got fans wondering if the Sea Sprite Hotel in Veronica Mars is real. The true answer: it sure is.
While Mars and Co. eventually discover Patton Oswalt's character Penn, a pizza delivery guy obsessed with true crime notoriety, placed the bombs around the seaside town, uncovering whether the hotel is fact or fiction is a little complicated. Most fans know by now that Neptune, California is not a real place, but rather inspired by the affluent Orange County community. As it turns out, the Sea Sprite Hotel sort of follows that trend. Per The Beach Reporter, the Sea Sprite is a real travel spot.
Located between 10th Street and the Strand and near the Hermosa Beach Pier, Veronica Mars actually filmed at the real-life motel during production on the show, which went from November to March of last year.
The outlet explained that the Sea Sprite made for a natural filming location due to the hotel being remodeled at the time. Because of construction, the crew of Veronica Mars was better able to simulate explosions on the ground. Plus, most of the revival was filmed in and around the Hermosa Beach and Sea Sprite area.
Dan Etheridge, a producer on the original series, film, and revival told The Beach Reporter, "Generally speaking it's been a terrific experience," when asked about filming in the town. Etheridge went on to speak about the retro charm the motel lends itself to within the show. Plus, he revealed the doomed accommodations were actually "home base" for production. "The old-school Sea Sprite motel has been a great home to us, essentially playing a version of itself as a Spring Break headquarters in our fictional Neptune, Calif.," Etheridge told the outlet. He went on to add, "With that location as a home base, we have been able to also use many other terrific locations down there, including restaurants, parks, and, of course, the beach and Strand."
So, you actually can book a stay at the Sea Sprite Motel. Per its website, it is located along The Strand and "offers cozy accommodations overlooking the Pacific Ocean." It also boasts that rooms are "just steps from the sand," and in a prime spot for restaurants and nightlife. Plus, if you're a die-hard marshmallow, the chance to visit the filming location alone is worth the trek to California.
Considering that many of the iconic spots from Veronica Mars are fictionalized, including the P.I.'s schools Neptune High and Hearst College, it's a pretty big deal that the Sea Sprite is a real-life locale. As fans dive into Veronica Mars Season 4, the Sea Sprite should expect a flock of fans making reservations.